Mark Morrow is the magistrate stood down from duties last week.
Mark Morrow is the magistrate stood down from duties last week. Allan Reinikka ROK050918amorrow4

Police Union: insufficient resources cause of court delays

THE Police Union has come out in support of Rockhampton police officers over investigation delays hampering court proceedings.

Police were accused of being behind delays at Rockhampton Magistrates Court by acting Magistrate Mark Morrow in a stinging courtroom rebuke.

Following his courtroom attack, Mr Morrow has since been stood down from his acting magistrate's position.

He is now on stress leave leading to him being hospitalised on Wednesday.


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Queensland Police Union general secretary Mick Barnes said the real issue was a lack of police numbers, saying investigating officers in the region were "very busy".

"There are insufficient resources for police to retain their responses to call for assistance and complete their court work," he said.

"It's all well and good to call on individual police officers but those that should be held accountable are the senior commissioned officers who manage police resources.

"They need to be given the relevant time to commit their energies in completing the necessary briefs for court matters.

"The recent weekend events in Rockhampton (shooting Friday night and five-hour siege Saturday) are a good example where all police were operationally tasked."

Mr Morrow made orders for affidavits on August 22 so the courts could get a better understanding over delays in eight cases.

His actions were guided by guidelines for all Queensland magistrates where full briefs of evidence should be provided to defence with 35 days, unless there are sufficient reasons.

This followed the case of Troy Allan Donovan, who was remanded in custody for two years on a manslaughter charged, which was dropped earlier this year.

The Rockhampton Magistrates Court also heard on Tuesday that police were too busy over the weekend to do a bail address check for Ashley Liam Davis, who was held in the watchhouse since Friday.